These depressive periods tend to hit between Fall and Winter seasons (between October and March) when temperatures are colder and we’re forced into longer days of darkness.
Unfortunately, I am one of the unlucky ones that experience the undesirable symptoms.
I’m not sure if it’s connected but I suffered depression as a preteen up until my early 20’s due to abuse I experienced between the ages of 12 and 13. It was a life changing experience and I still deal with the hurt this very day.
Cold temperatures, the lack of greenery and flowers, and the lack of sunlight really do a number on my mood. I battle the blahs daily but there ARE things that sufferers like me can do to make it more tolerable.
Before starting any self healing, be sure and talk with your doctor to make sure they are in agreement with your choices.
Here are a few remedies to get you started:
Phototherapy or light therapy – this involves the use of a device that simulates dawn, gradually lighting your room like a sunrise. These range from battery-operated to electrical simulators.
Maximizing your Daylight Hours – Keeping shrubbery and trees trimmed around your home will help let the sun shine in your windows throughout the day. Make sure you open your window treatments as well so nothing blocks your view.
Participate in Activities that involve positive people – Some people have a nature way of shining all on their own. They’re happy and full of life and it can rub off, elevating your mood. Find activities that you love and do them regularly. Volunteering is one way to increase your mood. Helping others is a win-win situation!
Get Outdoors whenever possible – take walks on sunny days because even an hours worth of walking in the winter sunlight can be effective in reducing symptoms.
Exercise – Sure it’s hard to get motivated but there are several benefits to exercise aside from weight loss including your body’s ability to release endorphin’s— natural pain and stress relievers. And it gives you more energy. You’re more apt to feel good about yourself as well.
Choose Bright & Cheery Paint & Decor – Painting your walls and trim with bright, sunny colors is a surefire way of perking yourself up.
Herbal Remedies – St. John’s Wort is said to be a natural mild antidepressant, increasing the mood boosting brain chemical serotonin. Just be careful because it can also increase skin sensitivity. Always wear sunscreen!
Psychotherapy – Your doctor may want to prescribe a few rounds of psychotherapy if other means do not work. Talking with a counselor can be very therapeutic, not to mention a beneficial way of identifying and changing negative thoughts and behaviors.
Medications – As a last resort, especially if your symptoms are severe, there are plenty of antidepressant treatments by way of prescription medications. The downside to these is that there are always side effects with drugs and they can take weeks before you notice full benefits (if there are any).
NOT SURE IF YOU HAVE SEASONAL AFFECTIVE DISORDER?
No one really looks forward to dark, gloomy days and dreary nights. But for some people the transition from Summer to Fall and/or Winter triggers feelings that are harder to cope with. Want to know if your gloomy attitude is being caused by seasonal depression.
Take a look at the symptom below:
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s probably a good idea that you consult your doctor and work out a plan to help ease your symptoms so you can get back to enjoying life.
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